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Compromise Nears On Firefighter Settlement Financing

by Gabe BullardThe Louisville Metro Council's Budget Committee will take more time determining how to finance some 30 million dollars of a settlement with firefighters over underpaid overtime. The committee Tuesday tabled for the second time an ordinance financing the payments so they can gather more information and draft amendments.The committee is poised to approve a plan that would tap the city's rainy day fund to pay for a portion of the settlement and issue a bond to pay for the rest. This plan would ideally keep interest on the bond low as it's repaid over the next few years. It would also preserve much of the city's cash reserve, which is set aside for emergencies and used to determine the city's credit rating.Budget committee member Hal Heiner says councilmembers must determine how much of the settlement will be paid out of reserves and how the money will be replenished."There needs to be a plan in place that we would expect the administration to follow in future budgets to restore the city's reserves," he says.Heiner says the committee will also have to determine the length of the bond to be issued.

Gabe Bullard is the director of news and editorial strategy.